Four Downs With...

As a coach, how often were you asked about playing Texas?

"Well, I think always, both as a player and as a coach, to win the Southwest Conference championship in those days you had to go through Texas every year. But as a coach, the six years that we were here (1984-89), those were some of the heydays of Texas A&M and also SMU and also Baylor, as well as Texas. So probably from the bottom there were a lot more stronger teams than just purely Texas all the years that we here coaching."

How often are you asked about or talk about that punt return against Texas in 1964 (an 81-yard return in a 14-13 win in Austin)?

"Well, a bunch. ... Living down in Houston for 13 years (as Rice University's coach), there was a good bit of talk and when I'd go around — not really fondly by the other side. But anyway, it was mentioned at times. It was a good play because it was the first score of the game and it was such a great team play that seven or eight people really got great, devastating blocks. So it kind of just energized everybody to put us in the game."



Go through that punt return. What do you remember about it and did you see it quickly developing and you scoring a touchdown?

"Well, two things happened. One, all summer that was kind of my motivation when we'd run sprints every day down in the Delta. When I'd get ready to run the last one, I could picture myself. I felt at that time just scoring on the opening kickoff against Texas and going all the way, that's what I kept thinking to motivate me. ... But in that game, I know the night before the game the newspapers down in Austin that's the only thing they talked about: ‘I guarantee you one thing, Arkansas won't run a punt back tomorrow.'"



Is there any doubt that Texas is Arkansas' biggest rival?

"During that time, no. The main reason was, when Arkansas was in the (Southwest) Conference, we were the only out-of-stater. So it was like we always had the feeling that we're the out-of-stater taking on the whole state of Texas. You had to play all the schools in Texas in the conference. So once you're taking them all on, the one thing you want to do is come up with the strongest and that is the University of Texas. ... It absolutely brought up the best in us."

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